The Animal Foundation Update: 30 Canines With Respiratory Symptoms Are Being Tested
Several canines in the care of the Animal Foundation recently fell ill with respiratory disease, and the organization updated its status report.
The foundation’s veterinary staff recommended stopping all canine adoptions, transfers, and foster care during that time.
Animal Foundation revealed that a dog with a contagious condition had been brought in. According to the foundation, it is now examining roughly 30 canines with symptoms of upper respiratory infection.
The Animal Foundation Statement:
Several days ago, a pet was brought to The Animal Foundation which later exhibited a respiratory illness that had the potential to infect other animals in its proximity. In accordance with advice from our veterinary team and from national veterinary experts on disease in animal shelters, The Animal Foundation is taking the necessary step to stop taking in any additional stray or owner surrendered dogs while we monitor and clear the facility of the disease. We are currently testing 30 dogs at the shelter showing signs of an upper respiratory illness and when they are treated and cured, we will be able to reopen our intake operations. This step is being taken both to protect the animals already in our care and to halt any potential spread.
Several other shelters across the nation have experienced increased cases of canine respiratory illnesses this year, so our priority is to ensure a safe and healthy environment for the dogs in our care and in our community.
“The Animal Foundation takes in animals of all backgrounds, but due to the open admissions policy, we don’t always know the history of the animals coming to the shelter,” says Hilarie Grey, CEO. “Everyone who works here is here because they love animals, so we try to make decisions as though each animal was our own.”
Seven dogs at The Animal Foundation have tested positive for the highly contagious Canine Pneumovirus, and test results are still in process for the remaining dogs. All dogs are responding well to treatment and we are closely monitoring them. And according to experts, the best way to prevent the spread of the disease is by quarantining affected dogs, and limiting the number of dogs who enter the shelter.
“Canine Pneumovirus causes symptoms such as coughing, sneezing, and nasal discharge, and fever. Most affected animals experience mild cold-like symptoms, but some dogs can develop more serious disease that can progress to pneumonia,” said Dr. Casey Miller, Chief Veterinarian at The Animal Foundation.
The Animal Foundation has been working closely with Dr. Cynda Crawford, a Fredrica Saltzman Endowed Professorship Chair in Shelter Medicine and a Clinical Associate Professor in Shelter Medicine at the University of Florida’s Maddie’s Shelter Medicine Program and Julie Levy, DVM, PhD, DACVIM, DABVP a Fran Marino Endowed Distinguished Professor of Shelter Medicine. They have assisted us in creating a plan of action based on recognized best practices to safeguard the health of the animals in our care and the community.
“Canine pneumovirus is a highly contagious respiratory virus that spreads easily and rapidly in populations of dogs in shelters and boarding facilities. Most dogs do not have pre-existing immunity to this virus and there is no vaccine, meaning nearly all dogs are susceptible to infection. While infected dogs from the community bring the virus into a shelter, there are very effective intervention strategies to stop virus transmission and prevent release back into the community,” said Dr. Cynda Crawford.
Dog adoptions at The Animal Foundation are also temporarily closed, and our goal is to fully reopen as soon as possible once we know that all of the dogs are safe and healthy. If a lost pet is currently at the shelter, owners will still be able to pick them up. An appointment is recommended.
There is no further information at this time.
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